I’m so mad this morning I could just spit. It’s about this impeachment thing. Leon used to abuse us something awful. He extended his big brother’s power way past “acceptable.” He’d sit in the shade of that old cedar tree back in the day and throw rocks at me and Dave if we weren’t mowing as fast as he wanted us to.

Of course, Daddy clearly told Leon to mow the yard. He was the oldest and quite naturally the one Dad expected the most from. But Dad would leave for work and Leon would tie us to the old push mower. He was so much bigger there wasn’t nothing we could do.

Oh, we tried. We’d say we were going to tell Daddy when he got home. Leon threatened to beat the ever-loving daylights out of us if we did. We’d holler for Mom but Leon could charm her into believing his half of the story…..no matter how skewed, distorted or manipulated HIS facts might have been.

We’d fight him some days. Boy howdy, that was a losing proposition.

I feel so dumb today. It never crossed our minds one time that we could file impeachment proceedings against him. Who knew we had legislative recourse……

It was the same with the peanuts. Daddy told Leon to have so many rows pulled when he came in that afternoon. Leon kept an eye on us from that same shade. He just had to adjust to the other side of the tree.

You talk about hot dusty work! Real peanut harvesters would loosen the soil a mite around each plant before gently and carefully lifting it out of the ground. That took too long for Leon. We just bent over, grabbed the plant and pulled straight up hoping most of the pods would stay attached.

Leon would stroll over on occasion to taste-test a few raw peanuts. If I had it to do over again, we’d have taken an impeachment vote before breakfast!

Mr. Johnson, the new principal our senior year, called me and John Ingram into his office after the lunch room food lock-out and accused us of being the instigators. Listen, this was one of the few times I was almost innocent. Neither John nor I had really been the leaders of this thing. We might have made a suggestion or two—but nothing you could pin on us.

He was reading the riot act to us about how much money our actions had cost the school district. He was tossing in that part about we were supposed to be school leaders. And his closing argument implied our graduating prospects might be in jeopardy.

John and I just sat there. Without a word. Like guilty idiots.

I’m wondering this morning if there is a statue of limitations on filing an impeachment proceeding…..

I’d also like to impeach a couple of silly girls I foolishly dated and the guy that hit that game winning homerun off of me in the thirteenth inning down at Fort Pillow.

The communist might be the worst. He was my Russian History teacher at the University. And I know a liberal arts school could be a bit out there…..but this guy was ridiculous! Told us right up front socialism was by far a much better system than anything we were doing in America. He thought that Lenin fellow was some kind of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson rolled into one.

I don’t know how many votes it takes to impeach a tenured college professor….but I believe we had them.

Of course, life teaches us a lot about impeaching folks that don’t meet “our” standards. In Mr. Johnson’s case, I might have been a bit more guilty than I let on. I probably walked into the Russian History class with some definite preconceived notions.

Leon pushed us around a little, but guess what, NOBODY else in town did. He made sure of that! He put the first baseball in my hand. He walked us to the picture show every Saturday. He’d drive us out to the Frank’s Dairy Bar. He toughened me up for the real world.

As life stretched on, I ended up worshiping the ground he walked on.

Sometimes you don’t know till all the scores are in.

I can hear Leon now, clear as a bell, yelling down at me from the shade up in Heaven, “Let the guy who has no impeachable acts in his own resume cast the first stone…..”

 

 

Respectfully,

 

Kes